An Interview with VRforHealth partner, Get Real: “How can healthcare organizations jumpstart adoption of Virtual Reality?”

Get Real is a specialized consulting firm, leading forward-thinking companies, institutions, and organizations in the adoption of Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and other immersive technologies to improve the way they work. Get Real partners with VRforHealth, in support of our common goal of accelerating access to wellness and therapeutic Virtual Reality solutions.

Denise Silber, co-founder of VRforHealth interviewed Ed Haravon, CEO of Get Real about how healthcare organizations can jumpstart their adoption of Virtual Reality, from educating themselves, on to execution. She also was able to get in a question about the VR headsets seen at CES 2023!

DS: If you were advising a healthcare organization interested in getting into wellness and therapeutic virtual reality, where might you suggest they start? What are the determining factors?

EH: Our number one piece of advice is to start with a small, tangible problem that would result in an improved experience for key stakeholders. Using technology just for technology’s sake may be “cool” but ultimately the effectiveness of the program and the treatment will be the measure of long lasting success.

The first step is to educate yourself about the products and capabilities in virtual reality. Simplify this process by utilizing the knowledge and experience of a consulting firm like Get Real. The next step is to deploy a targeted pilot. Be sure to measure your benchmarks prior to launching your pilot so that you can clearly document how the adoption of VR technology has improved your use case.

Get data, modify pilots according to feedback, sample different software solutions. The knowledge learned along the way of running pilots and gathering knowledge will pay dividends in the long run and position you to ultimately move decisively when technology advances to a level that represents a breakthrough in treatments

DS: A primary objective of the work you do at Get Real is « connecting organizations and immersive technology ». This includes providing information, education, and demos, responding to RFPs, helping with solution selection, conducting pilot programs, organizing onboarding and training processes, updating hardware and software. Does this mean that a client organization can work with you at any stage of its technology adoption?

EH: Of course! We have had many instances where clients came to us in the middle of a project because of some difficulties or struggle they were having – and we were able to get them back on track. In an ideal world we like to be present at the beginning so we can see the project plan through holistically, however, our priority is always the client and we will contribute to the success of a project at whatever stage the project is at when we are contacted.

A massive amount of what we do is focused on educating our clients on hardware capabilities, software capabilities, industry trends, etc. Like other transformational technologies, so much of VR needs to be seen and experienced in order to be understood- it can’t just be described. We see ourselves as guides, with the ability and experience to provide all of the necessary background information to help frame the opportunities for clients BEFORE they even think about purchasing.

We’re in the middle of developing a certified training program with one of our partner companies that will prioritize a customers’ successful experience in the Metaverse. We anticipate expanding this program to other partners in the future. Our main goal at Get Real is to help businesses and organizations to have positive experiences while utilizing Metaverse technologies.

DS: Training, 3D Data Visualization and Experiential Marketing in the Metaverse are three of your most supported activities. What are your thoughts on how they apply to healthcare?

EH: Our value proposition to clients is rooted in being subject matter experts in VR, AR, and other immersive technologies. Through client experiences and our deep connections within the industry we have access to people, products, and companies in a variety of verticals. Our approach to healthcare mirrors our expansion into other verticals. There is a need for education and baseline product knowledge before any VR program can be initiated. Healthcare professionals are extremely busy with everyday challenges of their job, and they need an objective independent partner to help guide them through all stages of the buyer’s journey.

The potential for VR to help patients and increase the efficacy of healthcare makes it a compelling time to enter this market. We believe that by removing obstacles and increasing knowledge of the products and technology, healthcare experts can focus on what the truly impacting applications are, with Get Real increasing the likelihood of not just a successful product launch, but a timelier one as well.

DS: You follow immersive technology quite closely. What insights might you like to share post CES 2023 ? Do you see headset prices dropping any time soon?

EH: First and foremost, it is important to note that we are still in the early stages of the technology. The Meta Quest 2 continues to be an expensive yet high quality way for consumers to experience VR. Innovation being driven alongside by other suppliers like HP, Pico, HTC. The next wave of feature and functionality with Quest Pro will have profound effects, especially with its full color pass-through technology Mixed Reality.

All eyes are on Apple’s much rumored device in the next 12 months. The recently-conducted Consumer Electronics Show highlighted several important AR & VR announcements, including the new premium headset from HTC — the Vive XR Elite, which at $1100, is particularly attractive given that it is significantly cheaper than the Quest Pro. And, importantly there was an important leak regarding Apple’s highly anticipated XR headset, which might tie into Apple’s airpods, display current ios apps in 2d, and features an ultra-wide field of view compared to its competitors. Rumors of a spring announcement and a fall launch were circulating. We all know what Apple can do to legitimize a product category (watch, iPad, etc) and we are expecting a wave of expansion on the heels of this device being released.
Apple’s product will transform the industry and will result in a large surge of interest and demand in virtual reality hardware. Our advice to clients is to get ahead of the trend. Start now so that when the rest of the world catches up, they will be leaders in the industry.

DS: Thank you for this great information, Ed and team at Get Real!

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